Remote retrospectives with Google Forms, COVID-19 technology resources for nonprofits, online schoolwork help, starting work under lockdown.

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Boost. The power of positive impact

21 April 2020

Still open, still working from home

We hope all is well, and getting better as New Zealand gets moves to COVID-19 alert level 3.

We’re very grateful that, unlike so many people, we’re able to keep working during the COVID-19 restrictions. A big thanks to our clients for helping us get this remote working lark running smoothly.

Agile training on hold

Boost’s Agile training is currently on hold. The next Agile Professional Foundation has been pushed out to 10–11 August, unless we need to postpone again. Our fortnightly free Introduction to Agile is suspended for now.

If you're interested in doing either the two-day APF or the two-hour Intro as a webinar, please get in touch.

In this issue

Some stuff to help you get stuff done during the COVID-19 alert period:

  • Boost COVID-19 updates and resources
  • Running remote retrospectives using Google Forms
  • Starting a new job under lockdown
  • Commemorating ANZAC day safely
  • COVID-19 technology resources for nonprofits
  • Help with schoolwork when libraries are closed
Boost COVID-19 updates graphic with Unite Against COVID-19 logo from CC-by-4

Boost COVID-19 updates and resources

Here’s where you can get all the latest COVID-19 updates and resources from Boost. We'll be adding new resources and updates as they come to hand.

Boost COVID-19 updates

Running a remote retro with the help of Google Forms (and a cat).

Remote retrospectives with Google Forms

With so many teams now working from home due to COVID-19, there’s lots of interest in ways you can run remote retros.

Scrum Retrospectives let the team inspect and adapt the way they’re working together, which is especially important in times of change and challenge. But it’s hard to do this as a team when you’re all in your separate bubbles. You need some sort of virtual whiteboard so you can share your ideas. 

We’ve found that Google Forms are a simple way to do this. Boost Scrum Master Ruka Yamakami ran a demo at AgileWelly  and now has put together a step-by-step guide to using Google Forms to run a remote retro.

How to run remote retros with Google Forms

Greg Rogan

Lockdown no barrier for new Booster Greg

You might imagine that starting a new job in the middle of a lockdown would be a strange experience. But Boost’s newest developer Greg Rogan says it hasn't been a struggle at all. “People here connect so easily,” he says, “It’s been the best onboarding experience that I've had in any job. I’ve been blown away by the lengths Boost goes to to create a wonderful culture.”

Hooked on programming from age 15, Greg’s had a varied career, with stints in the public sector, advertising and time spent keeping COBOL systems alive and kicking for the financial sector.

He even managed to combine this with attending Jazz school, a double boon, as that’s where he and his wife first met.

A man checks out the Anzac Sights and Sounds website with an iPad in his hand and a dog on his lap.

Commemorate ANZAC day from the comfort of home

This Anzac Day, why not explore what World War I meant for New Zealand and Australia from the safety of your bubble. The Anzac Sights and Sounds website collects rare WWI film, interviews, songs, documents and photos from New Zealand and Australian audiovisual archives. You can see and hear what the Anzac corp experienced, including the only known footage of the Anzacs at Gallipoli.

We built the site for the WWI commemorations that kicked off in 2015. Here’s a brief look at the design and development process, for those with an interest in seeing behind the scenes.

Check out Anzac Sights and Sounds  →

COVID-19 technology resources for NZ nonprofits

TechSoup has collected a number of free or discounted remote-work tools for local charities. For some you can go directly to the supplier, for others you need to be a qualified TechSoup New Zealand member.

View the TechSoup technology resources  →

Checking out the AnyQuestions website at home on a tablet.

Helping Kiwi kids when the libraries are closed

Kiwi kids can still get help from librarians even though COVID-19 has closed the libraries. The AnyQuestions website we designed and built for the National Library lets kids chat online with librarians from 10am and 6pm weekdays.

Check out AnyQuestions  →

Our next Agile Professional Foundation runs on 10–11 August, unless postponed
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Te Aro Wellington 6011 New Zealand   |   |    +64 4 939 0062



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